The beauty of what I had planned for John’s birthday was that he was going to be conveniently away from the farm working, no matter what. If his friend, Tuna, had not texted and said they had work for him putting a roof on a house, I had planned to have him go work pulling roots at a local woman’s house. That was the plan…but we all know what happens when we plan: Life.
(Are you seeing the pattern of the blog yet?)
So, when I saw him bare-chested, looking at me through the kitchen window like he had just run up the hill less than an hour after I kissed him goodbye and watched him walk off towards what I thought would be a full day of roofing, I was a little taken aback. So much so, that I totally gave myself away.
“John, you’re back! Ohhhhh Bummer!!!!” I moaned, thinking that my dream of his birthday being spent building; creating shelter with the strength of his hands, hit a speed bump.
I guess builder people don’t like to fall off roofs in the rain. Huh.
“Huh, and here I thought you’d be glad I was here and you could spend the day with me.”
Suddenly I realized how what I said had sounded in the moment.
“Ha…ha…yeeeaaahhh. Of COURSE I’m happy you’re here! It’s just…WHY are you here?”
Bottom line, the man didn’t work. I was planning to have the ENTIRE day to clean and prepare our fish from the night before (Missed it? Read Part One!!!) bake him a gingerbread cake, work a little project for him on the computer, write a blog, and make a honey gingersnap pot roast, and he was supposed to go…away.
So, the surprise was blown. It was blown because I realized that if I had continued to be sneaky, and to avoid him all day in order to make my surprise a success, I’d probably destroy his birthday trying to make it perfect. How would I be able to explain that one?
“Hmmmm…I thought I could not spend any time with you on your birthday and it wouldn’t matter…don’t worry…I’ll ignore you all day but you’ll appreciate it later…”
Nah, not my style.
So, I explained exactly what I had planned to do for him. I decided to forego the computer project until a day when he wasn’t around so I could devote my attention to the present moment. I simply posted Your Everlasting Light , and went out with him to get a tutorial from Rene on the fish we caught last night.
We learned to use bone fish for fish cakes and to eat U’u’ raw.
We learned to filet aweoweo and Opakapaka.
In return for the lesson, we cleaned up the area. John had fun with the hose. He threatened to spray me. 😀
I spent the afternoon enjoying his existence, reading to him, and loving him. I had him join me in the kitchen in the afternoon when it was time to begin making his birthday dinner. He fried up some of the opakapaka we caught wrapped in seaweed with smoked gouda while I prepared the ingredients for his honey gingersnap pot roast and birthday cake.
We shared the same space as I meticulously iced his cake, swaying to Marc Anthony’s crooning. He was there when I crushed the mac nuts for the topping. He watched, beaming as I chopped up ginger chews to design the borders and the heart.
The pot roast came out perfectly.
The cake was pretty damn good as well.
We enjoyed the meal: a roast in a sweet honey ginger sauce with potatoes and carrots on a bed of white rice, a piece of gingerbread cake with a vanilla frosting topped with mac nuts and raw cane sugar dipped ginger chews (OK, FINE! I had TWO!!! …and a half…), and a cup of coffee con chocolate almond milk. We sang a version of Happy Birthday that will go down in the ages as on par with the Rat Pack. It was THAT good. 😀
We celebrated the Universe that night. I celebrated John, but I celebrate him every day. I wake up in the morning and thank him for existing. I go out of my way to make him smile…(like right now, though I think I’m making him a little uncomfortable by looking and smiling hugely at him while I type this sitting next to him on the kitchen sofa).
My question is, if it feels so good to celebrate someone’s life, why do so many people only do it when the rules somebody else made say they should? Why not do it whenever it comes to mind? Tell people that you love them when you feel it, not when someone tells you it’s OK! Toast with milk! Who needs wine? Spoil each other! Who needs a holiday or birthday? Dance when the music moves you!
Bottom line: Binger’s Birthday was a big success. Great friends, interesting stories, perfect fishing, yummy food, dank herb, light and sweet wine, and unparalleled love. Now THAT’s a recipe for a brilliant birthday.